česky english deutsch <<< >>>

Sopky v Geoparku

Železná Hůrka

A few steps from the Czech-Bavarian border lies the Železná Hůrka (Eisenbühl) National Nature Monument, which was declared a monument in 1961 to protect the relict of the youngest Czech volcano. The volcano is formed by a small 25 m high and 100–150m wide hill. It originated on a NW-SE running fault line penetrating the schists of the Dyleň crystalline complex. The Komorní Hůrka (Kammerbühl) volcano situated less than 15 km away lies on the same structure.

For a long time, Železná Hůrka served as an occasional source of natural slag for construction projects in the region. The perfectly preserved profile in the loose volcanic deposits (called tephra) is really the face of an abandoned gravel pit. The face clearly shows that at least two eruptions took part in forming Železná Hůrka. During the older one, large layers of pyroclastic rock of almost 15 m formed. A sequence of indistinctly bedded tuff, extruded by a subsequent eruption phase, lies on top of them at an angle of 30–40°. The volcanic material consists mostly of massive to highly porous congealed lava of olivine nephelinite composition. The so-called xenoliths, which are allogenic fragments of the crystalline basement, of ultramafic rocks of the Earth’s mantle, and of magmatic crystal cumulate, are less represented. 

Even Johann Wolfgang Goethe was captivated by the volcano and visited it on 23 August 1823, while travelling in the Cheb Region. Goethe is also the author of the first geological description of the site. Železná Hůrka is one of the sites on the thematic Geo-Tour “Volcanoes”, and its information board is located near the Mýtina-Neualbenreuth border crossing. 

GPS position

N 49° 59.475', E 12° 26.722'